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Workwear sales of note for 3.24.23:
- Ann Taylor – 40% off everything
- Athleta – 20% off shorts, swim, linen & more
- Banana Republic Factory – 40% off everything; extra 15% off purchase
- Boden – Up to 50% off
- Brooks Brothers – Clearance styles to 70% off. Some pretty serious markdowns!
- Express – 40% off dresses & tops
- J.Crew – 25% off your purchase; up to 50% off special-occasion styles
- J.Crew Factory – Up to 50% off everything; extra 15% off 3 styles; extra 20% off 4 styles; extra 50% off clearance
- Sephora – Up to 50% off select beauty
- Talbots – 25% off select styles; 25% off markdowns
Some of our latest posts here at Corporette…
And some of our latest threadjacks here at Corporette (reader questions and commentary) — see more here!
- What are your favorite parts of a typical day?
- At what point in your life (age, income level, whatever) were you able to take an annual vacation?
- What shoes can I keep at the office to go for mid-day walks (that go with everything)?
- How do you release stress or trauma that’s stored in the body?
- What are the best “networking for women events” you’ve ever been to?
- I feel like we’re burning through any savings we acquire…
- I hate my job and make 30% of what DH makes – should I quit?
- What do you keep in your office?
niche legal practice
Can we talk about working in a niche practice as a midlevel attorney? I’m a fourth-year associate at a mid-size firm with prior educational and work experience that lends itself handily to niche work. I love doing the niche work, my firm values it (my compensation reflects that the work is billed at a higher rate), and about 90% of the work I do now is in this area. However, the partners I work for are resistant to allowing me to do substantive work outside of the niche because they want me to be available at a moment’s notice to fully dedicate myself to niche work. This is problematic because i) there isn’t enough billable niche work for me to do to meet the bonus thresholds that I want and ii) I’m falling behind my class in some skill areas because the niche work isn’t giving me opportunities in those areas. On the second point, I’m worried about my future job prospects if I have a highly-developed but limited skillset. (I don’t have any plans to leave, but I realize that my small practice group could fold, I could want to relocate or simply not want to work at this firm, etc.) Has anyone else navigated these waters? On one hand, I don’t want to borrow trouble because I really am happy doing this work. But on the other hand, I feel that my firm shouldn’t be getting in the way of my ability to earn bonuses and no one else is going to look out for my long-term interests besides me. Thanks!
These are two separate issues, in my mind, as an older attorney. Can you develop enough of an expertise and enough business in your niche to sustain yourself long term? If so, you are indefinitely better served with that expertise. You will be more marketable to other firms should you want to jump, even without the book required of a “general litigator” or some other generalized area. Making enough hours or bringing in enough money to bonus (whatever the metric(s) at your firm) is nice certainly, but if bonus at your firm is just that, extra money without any tie to long-term advancement prospects, I would probably shelve that in favor of the focus. If qualifying for bonus is a step toward advancement (i.e., you will ultimately fall behind your peers if you don’t qualify), then you need to figure out how to balance both, likely by asking for more hours and work.
niche legal practice
Thanks, I appreciate the thoughtful response. If things continue as they are for another five years or so, I think I could develop the expertise and business to sustain myself in the niche. I guess I’m worried about the the years between now and then. For example, if the few partners I work for leave to take industry/regulatory roles or switch firms without me, I’m concerned about pinning my lateral market chances on the hopes that someone is hiring in my niche or is willing to pay a six-year associate to learn some junior associate tasks. (The fact that the people I work for seem to be happy using me as a cog in the machine rather than developing me into a well-rounded attorney makes me feel that they would not make room for me if they switched firms.) I also feel that my inability to do substantive work with people in other practice groups in preventing me from building the broader relationships that I need to succeed within my firm politically. As it stands, there are only a couple of people who are familiar enough with my work that they could go to bat for me and I don’t know if they have enough clout to really make an impact. I’m sociable and friendly throughout the firm, but I don’t have the opportunities to impress the “right” people with killer work product.
This was me a number of years ago. The bottom line is that only you can protect your career; no one else is going to do it for you.
I resolved the issue by going to the head of the department that dealt with my niche practice and told him directly that I loved the firm and wanted to make partner, but that I could not do that without developing other skills and practice areas in order to get buy in from the necessary number of partners. I got him to agree that I could take on other work in related areas, as well as “one shot” research and similar projects so that the rest of the firm could get to know me as they considered me for partner and so that I could broaden my skills to better serve our existing and future clients. I believe I got his sign off because I couched my request as a “win win” for everyone.
Taking on the other work meant more hours because I could not fall behind with my existing obligations and area, but it got me a lot of notice in the firm and resulted in me making partner because the decisionmakers all knew what I could do. Also, having skills in those other areas has enabled me to keep afloat during lean years in my primary practice area and has made me marketable if I ever want to leave my current firm because I can assist a number of practice areas as well as lead in my own.
niche legal practice
Thank you! I love your strategy of explaining that you needed to work with other people to get their buy in to make partner. I have this gut feeling that I need to diversify my practice to better equip myself to succeed inside and outside of my firm, but I have been struggling with how to do it with my firm’s support. Thanks for the roadmap, and I hope that I’m in your shoes in a few years!
You’re welcome! And know that if they will not buy in at this point . . . then you know it is time to make a move while you are in the prime of your marketability.
niche legal practice
Yes, this is coming to head for me now because I know (and I know that they know :)) that if I need to make a change, I’m best off doing it within the next two years. Thanks!!
I agree, but I have little choice, b/c I think about 70% of my firm’s busness is in a single niche area (WC Defense). Dad says I must stay b/c I have no other legal skills, and the firm depends on growing in this area, largeley b/c of my efforts. Right now it works out, but it depends on us NOT looseing any cleints and also on getting new ones. We DO have competition, as other firms also schmmoze with the insurance companies, but we do it also and b/c NYC has alot of employees that get hurt on the job (including fake injuries), we have alot of work to do and that translates to alot of billeables for me. (YAY, I suppose).
I don’t want to be doeing this for the next 25 years, but if I don’t get married and have kid’s, I could see myself sitting at my desk until I retire, and will proabably have a tuchus like Grandma Trudy, or worse. That is why I am looking forward to finding another way to channel my energy, either as a SAHM, or a WC Judge, where I will have more time for myself, even if I don’t make the kind of money I am now. It is better to be healthy, svelte and married, then single with a bigger bank account and unhealthy tuchus. That should be a lesson for all of us. DONT sit and work all kinds of hours like me, b/c you will NEVER meet a guy who will want to marry you if you are in the pantry rummaging around to find cookies at 7:30 pm rather then home cookeing for your family. FOOEY!
I will be in San Antonio this weekend, hopefully through Monday! Anyone have any must-sees or must-eats or must-dos for a first timer? We will be staying around the Riverwalk area.
Have fun! Go Nova!
Yes yes yes! Go Cats!
Do the one hour boat tour on the Riverwalk. It’s cheesy and probably overpriced, but you learn a lot of history about the area and it’s a good way to decide what you want to return to later. Go to Alamo Cafe (multiple locations I think) and eat as many flour tortillas as you can stand and then take some home to freeze :) La Fogata on Vance Jackson has pretty good food, but IMO, the appeal is the beautiful and huge patio. Go there if you’ve got a day with good weather.
Get a Lyft to Rosario’s or La Gloria and drink all the frozen drinkz. Get a Lyft and a reservation for Cured and eat all the meatz.
If you like beer, there’s a GREAT little bar walking distance from the riverwalk called The Filling Station. So charming.
This is so, so gorgeous. Someone with that kind of money to spend on a linen suit is probably only wearing it for an occasion – lunch, speaking engagement, photo shoot, etc and not too worried about wrinkling from wearing it for 8-10 hours at work.
One of my bucket list items has always been to have a max Mara coat. But I live in the Bay Area and to be honest I don’t really need an investment coat. I finally tried on a gorgeous wrap coat and it looked like a lumpy bathrobe on me!
I don’t like the cowl neck in linen – I think it looks messy. And like it would only get more so if you actually wore it when it was hot outside.
Anon in NYC
I think this is gorgeous too… but I also think I would wreck this in about 20 minutes of wearing it!
In all sincerity, the worry around linen looking wrinkled is confusing to me. I suppose as a lifelong southerner, I view linen as a utilitarian fabric. And–especially at the points in the year when it’s almost unbearable to wear anything else–its utility far outweighs the marginal downside of wrinkles. Everyone understands if you’re wearing linen it is going to be wrinkled. No one actually thinks you rolled out of bed; they think you’re being perfectly sensible by trying to keep cool.
I’m a little worried about the fact that one of the teams I’m on has stopped assigning me any work, even though every one else has been assigned on something. It’s a giant team of 14 associates, so it’s possible that they missed me. I was quite busy on another matter earlier, so I had been consistently turning down work requests. Since then, I’ve not proactively asked for work on the large matter.
Am I being phased out? If so, I’d rather I be taken off the team completely, so I don’t have to read the million team emails that I get everyday, which are not addressed to me. And I would be able to get more actively involved with a new matter without having to deal with this maybe yes/maybe not matter. I emailed the senior associate, but he has not responded and has generally been avoiding me. I don’t want to go to the partners without talking to him first, because then that would look like I’m snitching on them.
What do I do? Based on the lack of work on this team, I feel like bad performance valuations on this matter is coming my way, and there is nothing I can do. So the best thing to do is just to start looking for a new job. I’ve been at the firm for six months now, is it too soon to start looking for a new job based on this?
Have you talked to the senior associate in person?
+1 In person, or if that’s not possible, then on the phone.
What? Am I missing something? You were busy so they stopped assigning you work and somehow you made the leap to “I’m gettong fired and need to find a new job”?? Just talk to them and tell them you have more availability now and go from there.
Yes you’re being phased out. What year are you? If you’re junior (yrs 1-3) and were being truthful – you couldn’t work on that case bc another one was legit busy? I don’t see bad evaluations necessarily. Now if you were working 20-40 hrs on the other one and could have committed time to the case and didn’t – yeah that’s going to be a problem. If the senior doesn’t reach out to you (bc it’s easier for them to keep going back to the associates working for them full time) – I would let an assignment partner or someone know you need more work. You do NOT want to be caught in a situation of saying you’re too busy and not truly being busy enough and not telling anyone bc yeah firms don’t take kindly to that
I was legitimately busy because the partner on my other matter talked to the partner on the large matter, so they started adding more associates. But now that my other matter has slowed down, I have time to work now, but no one on the large matter seems to need me anymore. But it’s really stressful because I still have to read the million team emails that come through, so while I definitely want to jump on a new matter, I feel dragged down as long as I am still technically on the list serves to the large matter. Would it make sense to talk to the partner directly and ask if I can be taken off the listserv?
If it’s just the emails, see if you can create an Outlook rule to dump them all into one file and check it once a day or so.
3:08 here – sounds like it was legit if one partner talked to the other. I wouldn’t worry about a bad review then – likely the large case was massively busy then but isn’t now due to the 13 other associates so they don’t need you. Take a new case. NO don’t ask to get off the email list and certainly not the partner! You’ll look like a snowflake who is sooo bothered by emails. Just skim them. Or ask IT if they can take you off the list (they may not be allowed). I wouldn’t create a rule to delete them w/o reading bc you can’t be 100% certain that there couldn’t be one one day saying – Jane we’re slammed, if you’re done w your other matter could you do x?
Got it, I will send one more round of emails to the senior associates to ask for work. And if no one responds, then I will take a new case. I will also create a rule to dump all of the emails into a sub folder.
Thank you all so much for your advice!
My favorite response in this situation is always to go to the senior associate and say “hey, I have time right now and I’m trying to determine whether to pick up another matter, what do you see my time obligations being with regard to this case moving forward.” They will either give you work or tell you to get on a new matter.
THIS THIS THIS. Communicate. Say, “partner A got more associates so I could deal with partner B’s case, but now it’s calming and I’m turning back to Case A, and it doesn’t seem like y’all need me anymore! I really want to help, so are there things I can take on for you? other ways I can be useful? Or should I take a new case?”
What? You’re cray. You repeatedly told them you were too busy to do their work. If that’s no longer true, walk into a partner’s office and say hey I’m free now what do you need. I can’t believe you’re contemplating job searching based on this.
+1. I feel like this is just the life of a junior associate — you get busy on one matter, don’t have time for another matter, the other matter gets extra help to get the work done, the first matter quiets down, and you have time to go back to the other matter to pitch in where you can. If you’re clear about your limitations with your various matters and doing enough work overall, everyone understands.
If you haven’t asked for work then you need to do that. In person or on the phone, not by email. Email is not a good communication method.
Anyone bought the BR washable suits? Any thoughts?
For the price they pill faster than I would have liked.
This suit is amazingly gorgeous. If I lived in the South or Southwest and were swimming in money, this would be hard to resist.
What are your favorite blogs? Someone recommended a blog here recently and I can’t for the life of me remember anything about it other than that I really liked it. I think it was a style blog and it had two or three words in the name, but honestly I could be wrong. Helpful, I know.
Thank you all!
i like ‘a glossy discourse’
Haha, I love your description! I recently posted about http://www.houseofturqoise.com. Not a style blog per se but I love it.
Do you tip for items purchased through a company’s app and delivered to you by the company if there’s no tipping feature in app?
I was generally of the view that tipping would be included in app if it’s expected. However, with things like same-day prescription delivery and car refueling, I wonder if I’m missing something.
I’m in Silicon Valley and not always home/available when items are delivered.
It wouldn’t occur to me to tip in these situations. Amazon – not USPS, etc – has delivery drivers in our area, and it literally never crossed my mind to tip the Amazon driver.
Just want to share my amazement that there is a service for car refueling! They take your car and fill it up with gas for you??
That is amazing! There is a service at my work that will fill up your car in the parking lot (booster) and i thought that was swanky!
The service I use, Filld, comes by with a truck a refuels the car. Pricing, including the service fee, is competitive with the local gas station. It’s very convenient.
Amazon drivers do not accept tips even after delivering large, heavy orders. I have tried and the driver politely declined due to company policy.
Not maternity yet
How did you all approach clothes shopping while TTC? I’m super bored with my current wardrobe but I don’t know if it’s a bad idea to buy things now when hopefully they won’t fit in six months. On the other hand, I don’t want to put my life on hold for months or potentially years. Did you avoid major clothing purchases (like a suit)? Or just shop as you normally would and let the chips fall where they may?
I’m in the same boat and have been buying more shift dresses, flowy tops, etc. (With the possibly naive thought that loose clothing might disguise an early pregnancy when it does finally happen – bus casual office, so ankle pants and flowy tops are fine for a day with no meetings.)
Shop as you would normally.
I would not invest in expensive pieces that are fitted. I got back to my pre-preg weight quickly but never got back to my pre-preg size (my hip bones expanded) and most of my old wardrobe doesn’t fit. It would be a huge shame to invest in a beautiful suit or dress you can only wear for a couple months.
+1. I would also not get rid of any clothes you already have in any spring cleaning purges because you can’t know for sure what you may want to wear if you do get pregnant or (even more likely) afterward when your size is fluctuating.
I would treat this in the same way I might treat clothes shopping if I were trying to lose weight. I wouldn’t stop buying clothes (especially if necessary) because you need things that fit and look presentable at present. But I also probably wouldn’t splurge on more expensive pieces.
I totally hear you, was in the same situation myself until recently (now pregnant!). I stuck to buying things I absolutely needed, things I thought could work during pregnancy at least for the early stages (blazer, a couple shirts, some flats), and more investment-type things that I knew would work even if I don’t get back to my original weight very quickly (winter coat, purse). I do need a couple suits but have held off on those since I was hesitant to invest in something that wouldn’t work during and possibly after. I wouldn’t deny yourself if there is something you need, but I agree that it probably doesn’t make sense to buy size-sensitive big-ticket items for the time being.
Easy Impressive Dinner?
I’ve gone on 3 dinner dates with a guy and really like him. I want to repay him by cooking him dinner, but I don’t know what to make. I’m decently skilled in the kitchen, but would prefer something on the easy/less hands-on time intensive side. I’m pretty heavily vegetarian but am not opposed to eating meat, I just don’t love handling/cooking it.
Any ideas on a semi-romantic, impressive, GOOD meal??
Would you roast a chicken? Once you get it in the oven, it’s hands off and you’d have plenty of time for a pre-dinner drink with him.
Anon in NYC
Smitten Kitchen’s Ratatouille is so good. Very easy if you have a mandoline and can be prepped in advance. Looks beautiful, and it’s a cute story (inspired by Ratatouille the movie). As a meat eater, it’s entirely satisfying. I like to top it with a dill goat cheese.
If he knows you’re vegetarian, wouldn’t it seem slightly weird to him if you cook him a meat meal? If not, go right ahead. We have relatives who are now vegetarian but didn’t used to be, so they obviously know how to cook meat, but I would never expect them to cook it for me.
Easy Impressive Dinner?
Probably should have clarified: not actually vegetarian, but I eat a mainly vegetarian diet when cooking at home for myself because I dislike dealing with most raw meat :)
Haha, interesting but makes sense because I now remember that when I was a kid I was squeamish about the idea of even touching raw meat (this is probably pretty common).
Maybe squash lasagna? https://juliasalbum.com/butternut-squash-and-spinach-lasagna/
As a shortcut, I use the Birdseye frozen squash puree (https://www.birdseye.com/product/winter-squash-cooked/) rather than making my own from scratch – same thing for a fraction the hassle.
Fresh pasta from Whole Foods or similar fancy grocery, plus tasty sauce.
I’m fond of Giada de Laurentiis’s pancetta tomato sauce recipe when I want to do something that feels more upscale, but is still easy, and as long as you get the pancetta pre-chopped you don’t have to touch it. (I usually throw in a few handfuls of fresh spinach as well.) Obviously you could also do a nice pesto or a veggie sauce if that’s your preference.
I like to do a pasta. Buy fresh pasta, do a delicious vegetarian sauce, fresh bread, sex for dessert.
Whoa! They barely know each other!
That’s why sex is the dessert and not the appetizer.
I have also discovered WHOLE FOOD’S prepared food. I tried doeing a wedding chicken dish a couple of times, but it never worked out. I used to be a little squeamish about handling raw chicken and raw meat, but figured that I would NEVER get a guy to marry me if we just ate prepared food every day or went out to eat. Dad told me I would have nothing to bring to the table other then me, and s-x is not always what men want when they get home from a long day at the office. Even Ed is to tired for s-x with Rosa during the week b/c he leaves for the train at 6:15 in the morning, and rareley walks in before 7:45 at night. So he eat’s and then plops down in front of the TV by 9:15 after eateing and batheing the kid’s and putting them to bed. Rosa says he has littel energy for her except on weekend’s when they drop the kid’s off at the Y.
Baked ziti with a nice salad on the side. Maybe some homemade bread if you’re feeling up to it.
Mmmm ziti sounds so great. Eggplant parm might be a good option here too. I made mostly homemade eggplant parm with my SO last week, using pre-made breaded and fried eggplant cutlets from Trader Joe’s. Just layer it in a baking dish with sauce and mozzarella, then put it in the oven for 20 minutes. It’s awesome and easy.
Something not-heavy because having him over to your house after three dates means s3xytime and I am totally supportive of that! I’m more interested in what you’re planning to wear! (This old married lady is now vicariously dating through you)
Easy Impressive Dinner?
Oh, gosh…hadn’t thought about that! Probably no “gardening”, but I guess I should wear cute lingerie just in case. No idea what to wear as far as actual clothes go though…help!
Well, I guess it depends on what you want. I’d say a stretchy dress with some cleavage but that’s just how I roll.
Fish (salmon?) in parchment packets is super easy and delicious … just put some lemon slices, olive oil, s& p and fresh herbs on a piece of fish, pop it in the oven. Roast some veggies or saute some spinach, or a nice arugula salad … rice or you could go fancy with a potato gratin in the oven (do you have a mandoline?) Cheese and crackers or a dip for beforehand.
Stop by the meat or fish counter at Whole Foods (or similar). They will apply the marinade/injection/dry rub and give you cooking instructions. A good cut of meat/fish with the right blend of spices is always impressive. An assortment of roasted vegetables accompanies almost anything and as suggested above, a simple appetizer will help with any tension.
S in Chicago
Any food you need to avoid? I love fish and seafood but know a lot of folks don’t like it. Same with spicy. I’d think about the sorts of things he ordered on the dates you’ve had. Broad-appeal easy meal would be something like a lasagna, salad and bread and then maybe some type of impressive desert.
I made lasagna, salad, and bread the first time I had my hubby over for dinner. For dessert, these days I am super into vanilla ice cream topped with balsamic vinegar reduction. It’s delish and then you get to play “guess what this delicious ice cream topping is?” and that’s fun. Add whipped cream, sliced almonds, and a cherry on top if you want to be fancy.
My go-to “third date meal” (which is also literally the only thing I ever cook) is pecan-crusted maple salmon on a spinach salad with walnuts, goat cheese and strawberries (sometimes I switch up the salad depending on what i have at home… pear is also good if you don’t have strawberries). Serve with fresh crusty bread and a bottle of decent wine. Done. And takes maybe 30 mins to cook.
I’ve lost a significant amount of weight (30 lbs) since November, largely due to health issues. My work clothes are swimming on me. I don’t mind being thinner, but am ever hopeful I’ll feel well enough to eat normally and some of the weight will creep back on. Do I bite the bullet and have some suits taken in? If not now, how long should I wait?
Get at least a couple of things taken in and just tell the tailor to leave a… there’s a term for this but it’s escaping me… a lot of fabric at the seam so it can be taken out again.
I have the same advice for hopefully temporarily weight gain as for weight loss. Don’t spend a lot. Go to Marshall’s or Ross and buy a stretchy dress, skirt, pants and a few tops in a jersey fabric in a neutral that goes with most of your blazers, cardigans and shoes. Wear these pieces as your underlayer until your weight stabilizes. Don’t spend a lot on them, and then donate.
Love Marshall’s and TJMaxx, plus Target has some pretty good workwear options now too. I like their A New Day ankle pants, and you can get them on sale for $25.
Hope you feel better soon.
Can anyone tell me what happens when you block someone on an iphone? If they try to send you a text, do they get an error message letting them know they’ve been blocked, or does the text just go silently out into the ether, never to be delivered? An ex texts me occasionally and I’d really rather not get the texts as they make me sad. I never respond. I know I can just tell him not to text me, but for various reasons I don’t want to take that aggressive approach.
TL;DR: Can you tell if you’ve been blocked by someone on an iphone?
No, the other person cannot tell that they have been blocked. My mother accidentally blocked me for several weeks and I sent her messages that appeared to go through.
It will not show a read receipt – because you have not read them.
No, you can’t tell. After a creepy date, I researched it extensively and the answer on all the sites was that they “just go silently out into the ether, never to be delivered.”
If they have an iPhone, I think it won’t ever say “delivered” right? You should get a friend with an iPhone to help you double check.
Reposting from earlier for more responses. Fancy hotel etiquette! Assume one bag. Would you tip, and if so how much, for the following;
The doorman who grabbed your bag out of the cab and offers to have it taken up to your room.
When the concierge answers a basic question about directions
When you drop off a car at valet parking
When you drop off a bag at the bag check for temporary storage
I’d do $2 for the doorman, nothing for the concierge, nothing when I drop off for valet (but $5 when pick up), and nothing when I drop off bag check (but $5 when pick up).
You’re more generous than me. I’d do $2 for each of those services. Same if someone brings me a blanket or extra hangers or whatever, and I leave $2 on the bed for the maid every day, and $5 when I check out.
You’re both more generous than me. $1 per bag for anything bag-related; $2 to valet when I pick up the car; $1 per day for the maid unless I make a huge mess and no extra when I leave.
I think this is insultingly low.
Oh-one more… When the doorman flags for a cab and it’s very easy to get one
None for flagging a cab…